I love Gillian’s easy style and her commitment to her color palette.  She always does such a great job of making clothes that suit her lifestyle and tastes!  Get ready for some happy color courtesy of Gillian of Crafting a Rainbow!

The Day and Night Dress Challenge: Crafting a Rainbow

day night 1

I’m so excited to contribute to this years #dayandnightdresschallenge! If you follow my blog, Crafting a Rainbow, you’ll know that day dresses are my sewing sweet spot but cocktail dresses are not. I managed to mash up a few tried’n’true patterns and come up with two dresses that I love wearing!

Coffee Date Dress

For coffee, I chose an ITY border print sewn into one of my all-time favourite patterns, the Kitschy Koo Comino Cap. This is my ultimate everyday dress, and I’ve made it at least ten times! I love the kimono sleeves and neckline, and the balance of blousey bodice with the defined elastic waist.

Coffee Date Dress

For this version, I cut it on the cross grain to make the most of the border print. That did meant the fabric was less stretchy, so I freehanded a bit of ease in as I cut it out. Knits are so forgiving!

Maria Denmark Day Night Drape Dress

For my cocktail dress, I made *another* knit dress! I haven’t owned a plain black dress in years, so this seemed like the perfect excuse to add one to my wardrobe. The bodice is a Maria Denmark Day To Night Drape Top, which seemed perfectly named for this challenge! On the bottom, I used the Cashmerette Turner skirt, which is essentially a half-circle skirt. Initially I found the drape and the armscye quite low, so I took out an inch at the shoulders to raise everything up.

drape drape

The fabric is really what makes this dress something special – it’s the Stylish Fabrics Modal Poly Sandwashed Jersey, and it’s go the most beautiful drape and finish! I’ve sewn with similar fabrics before, but it’s something I can’t purchase locally, so I was so happy when Stylish Fabric sponsored fabric for this challenge! (In fact, they sent me the wrong fabric at first but were so quick and kind in sending along the right knit. I was impressed!)

*Stylish Fabric is offering  25% OFF the black modal/poly sandwashed jersey using the  code: “Gillian” upon checkout.

This fabric is a bit sheer in sunlight, so I self-lined the bodice and used a scrap of ITY to make a lining for the skirt. Now I don’t need a slip, and everything hangs beautifully! It’s winter in Canada, so I tried to style this as I would wear it now… but in summer I’ll wear it with metallic sandals and lots of bracelets. Like any good black dress, I think this would take me to any occasion, from errands to date night!

day night 2

Shown side-by-side, it’s clear my two dresses have a lot in common… but I love how the bright fabric of the coffee dress makes it fun and casual, and the more dramatic shape of the cocktail dress make it more feminine and flirty.


Ultimately, feeling comfortable always makes me feel more confident, and both of these dresses put a spring in my step! If I went out for coffee or cocktails in either dress, I’d feel like the best version of myself. That’s the magic of a me-made wardrobe!

Thanks again to Elizabeth for inviting me to join in, and to all the other incredible sewists participating – what an inspiring community! I’d love to hear from you: which are you more comfortable sewing for, coffee or cocktails?

Keep watching here on Elizabeth Made This   and on YouTube between now and February 28th for more amazing dresses from this wonderful global crew of sewing bloggers and vloggers I’ve assembled!  

Want to join in the fun yourself?


      1. Sew some dresses!
      2. Let other people know about it.  Use #dayandnightdresschallenge on Twitter and Instagram and follow the Day and Night Dress Challenge Facebook group.
      3. Keep reading here to find out the latest.  Follow Elizabeth Made This on Instagram andFacebook.
      4. Post a picture of your day look (coffee) and your night look (cocktail) to Instagram to enter yourself.  Don’t forget to tag me @elizabethmadethis and use the #dayandnightdresschallenge.
      5. Grab a graphic and post it on your site and/or repost on Instagram:
      6. The Day and Night Dress Challenge 2018



  1. You look so stylish in both dresses! love the colors on the day dress and the simple black one is so elegant! The jackets for your dresses is also very cute and well coordinated!

    • gilliancrafts Reply

      Thank you! I made that striped jacket a few years ago, and it’s been so much more useful than I ever expected!

  2. PsychicSewerKathleen Reply

    You’re always an inspiration Gillian and these dresses are so lovely on you – the black one especially does look like a step outside your norm and looks every bit as lovely on you as your colourful Coffee dress 🙂

    • gilliancrafts Reply

      Thanks Kathleen! I’m happy that this gave me an excuse to sew a black dress that I actually like!

    • gilliancrafts Reply

      My winter wardrobe is totally help together by cardigans!!!! I’d be lost without them!

    • gilliancrafts Reply

      Thank you! I was so happy when I found that fabric in an ends section, and there turned out to be just the perfect amount for this dress!

    • gilliancrafts Reply

      Hahaha – the last all-black dress I had was RTW from Walmart or similar, at least 8 or 9 years ago! This one has been a long time coming! 😉

  3. You look really great in both dresses! I love the style of your cocktail dress, and the fabric of your coffee dress! Beautiful!

  4. Such perfect dresses for you Gillian. I love your choice of a pattern and plain combo and you had me at draped neckline…your cocktail dress bodice design is stunning.

  5. Wonderful dresses! The shapes and the colours look wonderful on you!

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